Mental Health Statistics
Young people’s mental health and wellbeing has never been so important. These statistics show just how big – and growing – the problem is for young people in the UK
Mental health is a big issue for young people…
- 1 in 10 children have a diagnosable mental health disorder – that’s roughly 3 children in every classroom (i)
- 1 in 5 young adults have a diagnosable mental health disorder (ii)
- Half of all mental health problems manifest by the age of 14, with 75% by age 24 (iii)
- Almost 1 in 4 children and young people show some evidence of mental ill health (including anxiety and depression) (iv)
- Suicide is the most common cause of death for boys aged between 5-19 years, and the second most common for girls of this age (v)
- 1 in 12 young people self-harm at some point in their lives, though there is evidence that this could be a lot higher. Girls are more likely to self-harm than boys. (vi)
It has a big impact in adulthood…
- Women who had experienced one childhood adversity had a 66% increased risk of premature death, and those who had experienced two or more adversities had an 80% increased risk compared to their peers (vii)
- 1 in 3 adult mental health conditions relate directly to adverse childhood experiences (viii)
Young people need more support…
- 3 in 4 children with a diagnosable mental health condition do not get access to the support that they need (ix)
- The average maximum waiting time for a first appointment with CAMHS is 6 months and nearly 10 months until the start of treatment (x)
- CAMHS are turning away nearly a quarter (23%) of children referred to them for treatment by concerned parents, GPs, teachers and others (xi)
- Just 0.7% of the NHS budget is spent on children’s mental health (xii) and only 16% of this is spent on early intervention (xiii)
- The cost to the economy of all-age mental health problems is estimated at £105 billion a year – roughly the cost of the entire NHS (xiv)
i. Green H et al (2005) Mental health of children and young people in Great Britain, 2004. Basingstoke: Palgrave MacMillan.
ii. Green H et al (2005) Mental health of children and young people in Great Britain, 2004. Basingstoke: Palgrave MacMillan.
iii. Kessler RC et al. (2005). ‘Lifetime Prevalence and Age-of-Onset Distributions of DSM-IV Disorders in the National Comorbidity Survey Replication’.
iv. ONS (2016) Selected Children’s Well-being Measures by Country: 3 CentreForum (2016) Commission on Child
v. Wolfe et al (2014, Why children die: death in infants, children and young people in the UK).
vi. Brooks, F. et al. (2015) HBSC England National Report 2014. University of Hertfordshire; Hatfield, UK.
vii. Kelly‐Irving, M., Lepage, B., Dedieu, D., Bartley, M., Blane, D., Grosclaude, P., Lang, T., Delpierre, C. (2013) ‘Adverse childhood experiences and premature all‐cause mortality’ European Journal of Epidemiology 28(9): 721‐ 734.
viii. Kessler, R. (2010) ‘Childhood adversities and adult psychopathology in the WHO World Mental Health Surveys’ British Journal of Psychiatry 197(5): 378–385.
ix. Green H et al (2005) Mental health of children and young people in Great Britain, 2004. Basingstoke: Palgrave MacMillan.
x. Frith, E. (2016) CentreForum Commission on Children and Young People’s Mental Health: State of the Nation
xi. Frith, E. (2016) CentreForum Commission on Children and Young People’s Mental Health: State of the Nation
xiii. Frith, E. (2016) CentreForum Commission on Children and Young People’s Mental Health: State of the Nation